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Arkansas community asked to get Hepatitis A vaccinations after Little Caesars case

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PARAGOULD, Ark. -- Arkansas Department of Health officials are recommending a community get vaccinated after a Hepatitis A outbreak.

Officials say it stems from a Little Caesars employee in Paragould testing positive for the infection.

Now, it's being recommended the majority of Greene County get vaccinated.

“I’m a nurse, so obviously I believe in vaccinations," said resident Lori Hulett. "I believe it’s probably a good idea. There’s been a large outbreak in this area.”

Arkansas health officials say anyone who visited the Little Caesars on West Kingshighway between July 19th and August 2nd should get vaccinated -- Along with everyone in Greene County between the ages of 19 and 60.

Little Caesars released the following statement to WREG:

“Little Caesars cares deeply about the well-being of our customers and employees. The Health Department notified us that an employee in an independently owned, franchise store in Paragould, AR was diagnosed with Hepatitis A. We are doing everything we can to ensure a safe environment for our customers and employees. We are going above and beyond the health department’s requirements, including voluntarily closing the store and having it professionally cleaned and sanitized. The store will reopen upon completion. All employees are being vaccinated for the illness before being allowed to return to work. No other cases of illness have been reported.”

Since February, there have been 80 Hepatitis A cases known in the area, including one death.

Hepatitis A is described as a rare, but very contagious liver infection.

It’s spread person-to-person through fecal contamination or through contaminated food or water.

Symptoms range from fatigue to nausea.

Officials say the best way to prevent it is to get vaccinated.

And of course, keep your hygiene up.

The Arkansas Department of Health is giving free vaccinations for residents of Greene County for the next two weeks.

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